winter tyres

Nov 2, 2005
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OK you clever guys, what are winter tyres and how much do they cost. We have a ford mondeo, with low profiles.

This is not a test to see if you guys know your stuff, but I'll be waiting for your replies.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Hi Smiley. Winter tyres are heavy, block pattern treads designed for mud and snow.On most roads in this country, not worth the cost or hassle of fitting for the few times you'd need them
 

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Mar 14, 2005
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Proper winter tyres would be of little benifit in the UK as we dont get enough snow . A good quality m/s tyre should be sufficient. As foe cost depends on what brand you want. Try doing a google search.
 
Jul 15, 2005
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Hi guys,

Winter tyres are compulsory in Germany and many other northern European countries, but not Holland - where I work - because the winters are similar to the UK.

Some of my co-workers have snow tyres on a set of spare steel wheels for when they take their caravans to Austria on a skiing trip.

There are two special characteristics that make up a snow tyre; as the others have said the block pattern is meant to cut into snow - they look very different to a UK tyre which is designed to clear rain out of the way; but an equally important characteristic is the very soft rubber compound used in the tyre.

It's the soft compound that lets the tyre stay flexible and grippy at very low temperatures. This soft compound also seriously limits the maximum speed - otherwise the tyre will overheat.

Robert
 
Nov 2, 2005
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We are doing a lot of hunting. I should have said we are waniting to go to a small resort half way between Linz and Salzburg. A place called Inchl.

This is the first replies we have have of the net so far....

Austria

The use of winter tyres is not mandatory in Austria, although their use can be enforced through road signs. In particularly snowy areas drivers have two options; either use winter tyres or fit snow chains around the car's summer tyres. All-season tyres can be accepted as winter tyres if they carry the M+S mark and have at least 4mm of tread. Any tyre with a tread depth of less than 4mm is regarded as a summer tyre. Snow chains may be used when the motorist deems them necessary. In addition chains canbe made compulsory in certain regions. Spikes can be used with cars that weigh up to 3.5 tonnes and speed limits are enforced for these vehicles.

Germany

Winter tyres are not compulsory in Germany but they are a legal requirement in some mountainous areas.

It is from Etyres.
 
Nov 6, 2005
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As well as a "chunky" tread pattern, winter tyres are made from a softer compound of rubber which works better on tarmac at lower temperatures, below 7 degrees C, than normal tyres.

You either need an extra set of wheel rims or pay twice a year to have tyres re-fitted on your existing rims. Breakers seem to charge high for second-hand steel rims, it's often easier and chaeper to pick up s/h alloys with cosmetic damage.

Whether it's worth while fitting them depends how often you drive in country areas or go much above sea level.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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RogerL's reply is basically correct but while winter tyres are not legally mandatory in Germany or Austria, one would be considered at least partially to blame for an accident if proved that the braking distance was longer than what would be the case if winter tyres were fitted. Regular tyres would be considered as equipment unsuitable for the conditions.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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If you need two sets of tyres try the tyres and wheel shops that sell upgraded alloys. Often a good set of OE alloys can be obtained cheaply when someone upgrades to wider/lower profile etc.

I have my road tyres on a nice set of alloys and a second set of mud tyres on Discovery steel wheels. Works great in really bad wet conditions - but truly awful on tarmac.

Do also remember that if you do run a set of Alloys and secondary steel wheels - you will most probably need to have a set of wheel nuts for both the alloys and the steels - they are not interchangeable.
 
Nov 6, 2005
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CliveV - if you have alloys as original equipment, those bolts or nuts will work fine on steel wheels - it's when steel is standard that the bolts or nuts may have to be changed when alloys are subsequently fitted.

Many manufacturers supply steel spare wheels on cars with alloy road wheels but the same bolts or nuts are used!
 

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